HEALTHCARE SEEKING BEHAVIOUR OF EUNUCHS: A QUALITATIVE STUDY
Background: Eunuch is a broader term and include hermaphrodites, transsexuals and transvestite. In the subcontinent,
they called Hijra, Khusra or Khwaja sara. Their peek era was Mughal empire when they were exalted as guardians,
military personnels and courtiers. They lost their esteem during the British empire. This study was conducted to know
the healthcare seeking behavior of eunuchs.
Methods: This qualitative study was conducted in district Abbottabad of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa from December 2014 to
April 2015. Two Focus Group Discussions and Five indepth Interviews were conducted. Each Focus Group Discussion
had six eunuchs. Content analysis was done to identify different patterns.
Results: All key informants and participants of first Focus Group Discussion were illiterate and poor while participants
of second Focus Group Discussion were educated and well off. Self medication and fear of male hospital staff was
Conclusion: Eunuchs have developed miserable healthcare seeking behaviors just because of the societal response.
Key words: Eunuch, Transgender, Healthcare Seeking Behavior.